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Canadian Paediatric Society

Preliminary Mental Health Screening Tools

Note: These are broad-based tools

Screening tool (with link)

Age group(s)

Completed by

Time required to complete



Achenbach Child Behaviour Checklists (CBCL)

Ages 1½–5 and 6–18 years

Parent, teacher and patient, depending on version

10–20 minutes

For purchase

Available in French

Provides information on general functioning (social skills, family relationships, learning).

CBCL/1.5-5: The authors report test-retest reliabilities of 0.68-0.92 and inter-rater reliabilities of 0.48-0.67. 
CBCL/6-18: The authors report test-retest reliabilities of 0.73-0.94, internal consistency reliabilities (alphas) of 0.63-0.97, and inter-rater reliabilities of 0.57-0.88.

CBCL/1.5-5: The authors report evidence of discriminative, convergent, and predictive validities.
CBCL/6-18: Authors report evidence of discriminative, concurrent, convergent, and predictive validities.

Children’s Sleep Habits Questionnaire

4-10 years of age


10-15 minutes

Requires permission from developerJudith Owens

Evaluates sleep based on the child’s behaviour within 8 different subscales: bedtime resistance, sleep onset delay, sleep duration, sleep anxiety, night wakenings, parasomnias, sleep disordered breathing, daytime sleepiness.

Pediatric Symptom Checklist


4 years and older

Parent and self-report

5–10 minutes

Available in French

Brief screening questionnaire used by paediatricians and other health professionals to improve the recognition and treatment of psychosocial problems in children.

Child/ Adolescent Psychiatry Screen (CAPS)


3–21 years


10–20 minutes


Provides a starting point to screen for 18 mental health issues.

Weiss Symptom Record


Elementary through high school

Parent/ patient or teacher

10–20 minutes


Non-validated but exhaustive screening tool for over 23 mental health conditions.

Weiss Function Impairment Scales (Self-Report and Parent-Report)


High school to late teens

Patient and parent

5–10 minutes


Non-validated tool but recommended to collect systematic information from the patient and parent about various disorders, including learning, development and personality difficulties.


Last updated: Jan 9 2014